Joe Willock has confirmed that he’s pulled out of the England u21s this month with injury.
Willock was on the bench for Arsenal against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday, and at this stage, it seems like that was more to do with his fitness than a tactical decision.
The midfielder wrote on his Instagram story: “Disappointed to be withdrawn from the u21s due to injury. All the best lads @england”.
It’s a big shame for the 20-year-old, who had started the season really well with Arsenal and would’ve been making his first appearances for the England u21s. James Benge reports that it’s a minor inflammation of the calf.
Sam Greenwood has also had to pull out of England duty with injury, but seven other Arsenal youngsters have received call-ups from the England u17s to the u21s, so there’s still plenty to keep an eye on.
The fact that Willock still made the squad against Spurs at the weekend seemingly confirms Benge’s report that the injury is nothing too serious, and his withdrawal from England duty is no more than a precaution.
From an Arsenal point of view, if there’s a good time for a player to pick up a knock, it’s right at the start of the international break.
Willock will have time for a bit of a rest over the coming days, and that will hopefully see him ready to return for Arsenal’s game against Watford next week on Sunday.